Guest Lectures

Sondre Solstad, The Economist

Dr Sondre Solstad is The Economist’s Senior Data Journalist. He has been cited by the New York Times, CNN, Wired, Foreign Policy, been made the subject of a documentary short by Vox, and has been short-listed for “Data Journalist of the Year 2020”.

His work at The Economist just this year includes the modeling behind the recent Covid 19 excess mortality estimates via Gradient Boosting Models (see the excellent non-technical background piece as well as replication code and data; also see this introductory Twitter thread). More recent work considers the environmental / emissions impact of food choices.

His personal website at has links to his research and teaching during graduate school. He holds a PhD from Princeton University, a BA from New York University, and has studied at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, and Peking University.

The lecture took place on Wednesday, October 27, at 13:00h Central. A recording is available (to anybody with a valid University of Illinois netid).